On Tuesday, 15 January, the International Criminal Court (ICC) ruled in favor of the acquittal and immediate release of Laurent Gbagbo, former President of Côte d’Ivoire.
” The Chamber grants the acquittal requests presented by Laurent Gbagbo and Charles Blé Goudé (former leader of the Young Patriots movement, loyal to Mr. Gbagbo) concerning all the charges ” against them and ” orders the implementation immediate freedom of the two accused “said Presiding Judge Cuno Tarfusser.
Mr. Altit, the lead counsel for Laurent Gbagbo reacted a few times after the verdict of the presiding judge: ” It is a victory of justice. It is a victory of the International Criminal Court and judges, who have shown independence. It is the victory of a man, Laurent Gbagbo, unfairly accused, and finally, it is the victory of his defense team, which fought since the beginning in this affair “says Emmanuel Altit,
For his part, former President of the Republic and current President of the Democratic Party of Côte d’Ivoire (Pdci) Henri Konan Bédié also reacted to the acquittal of Laurent Gbagbo: ” The charges against him have not been proven, “he told our confreres in France24 before adding:” It is a good thing for reconciliation and peace. (…) I said that 7 years spent in prison while the judgment could not find a way out, that it was necessary to put an end to it, thus, to acquit it “.
Finally, Henri Konan Bedie made an exhortation: ” We must refer to the decision of the judges, ” he said before expressing his desire to meet Laurent Gbagbo, upon his arrival in Côte d’Ivoire.